Fixed Line Crankbaits?

by Jay Guarneri
(Manhattan, KS)

Going through my old fishing stuff the other day, I found my old box of Mepp's spinners, along with a couple of micro crankbaits from when big fish/small lure was the latest fad. This got me thinking about how small spinning lures would work with a fixed line system, so I threw the box in my sling pack. I recently discovered a stream nearby with a good population of spotted bass which seemed like a good place to test them out. I tried a few flies first, but I was striking out so I tied on the smaller of the two crankbaits and gave it a go. I have a fairly stiff rod, but the casting was still pretty horrendous. Swinging the lure out underhand worked much better than a regular overhand cast and allowed for a reasonably gentle landing. Fishing the lure was actually pretty enjoyable. I simply used short jerks as if I was fishing a streamer. I even managed to hook a couple of bass, including this 12 incher. The take was surprisingly subtle. I'm not sure if I would have noticed if I couldn't see the fish take. I don't know if I'll be repeating this experiment, but it was interesting to see that it could be done.

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